Nearly two weeks after the Donald Trump administration claimed it had dispatched the USS Carl Vinson to North Korea in response to Kim Jong-Un’s aggression, we now know that the Carl Vinson was never anywhere near the Korean Peninsula. After the media exposed that the ship had instead been thousands of miles away, the Trump administration is struggling to explain why it made the false claim. But it also raises the question of why Russia and China falsely claimed they were chasing the ship to North Korea.
On April 18th, the Washington Post (link) and New York Times (link) both managed to sleuth out that the USS Carl Vinson had been in an entirely different ocean than the Donald Trump administration had claimed. That’s left the administration struggling to decide whether it wants to claim that it somehow lost a U.S. warship for a week, or admit that it purposely lied about the ship’s location.
But back on April 16th, just two days before the gig was up, the Salt Lake Tribune newspaper ran a wire story from The Japan News which reported that Russia and China had dispatched their own ships to chase the USS Carl Vinson to the Korean Peninsula (link). The National Post, a major Canadian newspaper, also ran a similar wire story and credited it to The Japan News as well (link). The Japan News is a major English-language Japanese newspaper, and it must have believed the story was true when it published it. But now that we know the USS Carl Vinson was actually thousands of miles away, how is this possible?
Several members of the Trump administration began publicly making the claim back on April 8th that the Carl Vinson was en route to the Korean Peninsula. Is it possible that eight days later, Russia and China still hadn’t used satellites and tracking technology to figure out the ruse, and were mistakenly chasing a ship that wasn’t there? Is it possible that the Trump administration convinced Russia and China to play along and falsely announce they were chasing the ship? Neither explanation makes much sense, but one of the two must be true. This means Trump has even more to answer for. Contribute to Palmer Report
Bill Palmer is the publisher of the political news outlet Palmer Report